The Small Scale Miners Association has blamed the Minerals Commission for the series of deadly mining blasts in parts of Ghana.
The miners accuse the commission of failing to enforce laws to regulate mining operations.
The accusation comes after 13 people have been killed and several others injured in the latest mining explosion at Gbane in the Upper East region.
The disaster struck before the wee hours of Wednesday at the Shaanxi Mining Ghana Ltd’s concession at Gbane, a community in the eastern area of the Talensi District.
The Mineral Commission Wednesday ordered Shaanxi to suspend all mining operations at its Gbane mining site with immediate effect.
“The smoke was not a common one resulting into the deaths. It’s authority failure. People don’t want to do their work,” said the acting Upper East Regional Chairman of the Ghana Small-Scale Miners Association, Robert Tampoare.
“It’s not Shaanxi. It’s the commission. If somebody blames Shaanxi, I don’t blame Shaanxi. Shaanxi doesn’t have any power to do anything. It’s when the authorities who have shirked their responsibilities and emboldened them. The inspection team of the Mineral commission is to be blamed,” he added.
Meanwhile, The Upper East regional minister Paulina Abayage is currently chairing a regional Security Council meeting on the deadly blast.
Shaanxi not Responsible for Mishap— PRO
The Shaanxi Mining Ghana Ltd denied responsibility as mourners around the site of Wednesday’s calamity continue to count casualties.
“I received a call around 1:00 am that some people had been brought to the regional hospital and others the Afrikids Medical Centre by one gentleman called Kofi Macho and another Bantama Kwesi. They say they inhaled gases when they were doing their operations. So, I asked whether these were our staff and they indicated ‘no’.
“They are not our staff. Most of these things happen at the blind side of our own operations. But because we are very close to them, they usually use us as a convenient alibi when these accidents occur. It’s in the course of their own operations that this has occurred.
“When we get to the hospital, we can establish who brought who, how many did the person bring, at what time and where were they working? At least, this should be able to assist the public with the truth and the facts. It’s very clear that the (victims) were not our staff,” said Shaanxi’s Public Relations Officer, Maxwell Wooma.
Sources say 15 persons are on admission in the wake of the midweek horror.